In a pilot investigation, Wei Li, PhD, professor of dermatology, Keck School of Medicine of USC, showed that heat shock protein 90alpha, found widely in cells throughout the human body, significantly improves healing when applied to skin ulcers in diabetic patients.
The research led to several USC patents for new drugs to be based on Hsp90a, which is currently being manufactured at 99% purity to meet clinical trial requirements.
Some $10 billion is spent annually to provide supportive wound treatment for diabetic patients. In diabetics, the elderly, or others with compromised health, wounds can remain open for months or years, requiring constant and expensive care to hold off infection. Li’s work may revolutionize treatment for these difficult wounds.